Looking to Buy Second Hand Suspension Parts? Here Are Some Things You Should Know.
Second hand suspension parts can be a good option that can save you some money. You can get good second hand suspension but you should be aware that components may be worn and will last shorter than the new ones. Here is what you should look for when you are buying second hand suspension parts.
When it comes to shocks, you should inspect the shock absorbers or dampers very thoroughly. Depending on the way the car has been driven and the conditions on the road, the average life of shock absorbers can deteriorate much more quickly.
You should avoid shocks that have flogged out rubber or if they leak. Any oil leak is the sign that the seal is broken and that it needs to be replaced. You also won't be able to pass a WOF with leaking shocks.
If the damper body has any damage or cracks it cannot be repaired as well as missing and damaged threads, scrapes and scratches can be buffed out but pitting and bent piston shafts need replacement. Bent piston shafts are a sign that they most likely came from a car accident.
Light rust is not a big issue but dampers should be disassembled before being installed to determine if the rust has moved into the damper body.
One way to test shocks is to remove the springs, then you should be able to compress the shock by pressing on the shaft. The movement should be smooth and the shock shaft should come back up automatically, otherwise that may indicate it has blown seal.
When it comes to bushes and ball joints, it's usually a good idea to get new ones. But if for some reason you must buy second hand, make sure that bushes have no cracks and that the rubber is not hard or crumbling. With ball joins, ensure there is minimal play in the joint and that movement is smooth but firm. If it is loose, flopping around or feels like there are steps to the movement, it's a sign the ball joint is at the end of its life.
Remember that every bit of damage or missing item is money you will need to spend to replace or fix it so inspect thoroughly when buying and always try to get parts with the least mileage and age as they are more likely to be in good condition.